ZIMBABWE BETWEEN A CRISIS AND A KAIROS (OPPORTUNITY):
THE PASTORAL MESSAGE OF THE CHURCHES ON THE CURRENT SITUATION
ZIMBABWE HEADS OF CHRISTIAN DENOMINATIONS
"As he came near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. Indeed, the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up ramparts around you and surround you, and hem you in on every side. They will crush you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave within you one stone upon another; because you did not recognize the time of your opportunity (KAIROS) from God.” - Luke 19:41-44Read more
Lectionary Selection: Matthew 23:1-12
Prayers for Kenya:
Dear God, we lift up our sisters and brothers in Kenya this day. We pray that Kenya's scheduled elections for October 26 bring peace and reconciliation to the country. Be with the people of Liberia, as they, too, hold runoff elections. We pray for children in Kenya facing severe malnutrition, especially in West and East Pokot, Samburu, and Mandera. God, be with the ministry of Dini Ya Roho Mafuta Pole Church as they work and minister in their community. Finally, we pray for the Jerusalem Girls School, as it stands as a light and hope for girls in the community. Be with all who work to make these ministries realities and for all who struggle. Amen
Ons Plek Projects has a simple and passionate mission: To make a substantive improvement in the lives of girls who live on the street and to prevent children at risk of becoming children living on the street from doing so.
Ons Plek Projects provides places where children find opportunities to build their lives and their self-esteem. Places where a sense of belonging helps them to take responsibility for themselves and for others.
Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.
–Former President of South Africa, the late Nelson Mandela
Educate a woman, you educate a nation.
–Former deputy President of South Africa, Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuka
Inanda Seminary, an all-girls secondary high school in Durban, South Africa, has equipped girls with the ‘weapon’ of education for nearly 150 years and is leading the way currently in the education crisis in the country. Over 85% of South African children attend under-performing schools and only 40% will graduate from upper secondary school.
Lectionary Selection: Matthew 22:1-14
Prayers for Kenya:
God of life, lead Africa to peace, justice, and dignity.
We know that you can do it, you can use us, for peace, justice, and dignity.
We are deeply saddened at the turn of events in South Sudan since its independence, including the killings and unrest leading to a continual displacement of populations inside South Sudan and across borders to neighboring countries – the consequence of which is a dire humanitarian crisis – the failure of the successful peace agreements, the struggles faced by the national dialogue process, etc.
In the midst of all this, and because you are still seated on your throne and are still sovereign, we want to continue to pray for our brothers and sisters who walk through this painful journey.
We continue to pray for the determination of church leaders in South Sudan on maintaining unity against all odds and for continuing to raising their prophetic voices towards the political authorities and the population at large. Give them boldness. We strongly believe that you do not forsake your own. Everything you allow has a higher purpose. We hope to rejoice with our brothers and sisters on the day you would stand on their behalf, turn things around, and make South Sudan a strong and stable nation.
We also come before you with the nation of Kenya. As the presidential election was nullified, there is political tension in the country that is threatening peace. On the other hand, the threat for a terrorism attack is permanent. We pray that you protect your people from any kind of evil and bring about peace in the land.
God of life, we raise from our hearts the concern we have for the Democratic Republic of Congo, especially in Kasai province where thousands of people lost their lives and property was destroyed. As we pray, there over three million Congolese who fled as refugees in Angola and thousands internally displaced. Many are living without shelter and children are exposed to all kinds of illness. We pray for your providence and protection over them. We also pray for the political situation of the same. Since the second and last term of the head of state was over on December 19, 2016, an election has not been organized for a peaceful transfer of power. Tension is now rising for possible trouble in the country at the end of December 2017. We pray that you give wisdom to political leaders to solve the problem in a peaceful way and maintain peace in the country.
We lift up the Church in Eritrea. As the country is going through difficult time economically, socially, and politically, let your Church give hope to your people. Reinforce interfaith dialog among different groups of faith and peaceful coexistence between people of Muslim, Orthodox, Evangelical, and Catholic faiths.
Lectionary Selection: Matthew 21:33-46
Prayers for Democratic Republic of Congo:
Our Father, who art in Heaven,
In this vineyard, we call the Democratic Republic of Congo, you have created a land of plenty. There is rich soil for planting. There are rivers, lakes, and an ocean that provide water – the earthly source of life. There is land containing a wealth of minerals. There is a people who are your faithful servants even in the midst of the harsh realities of their lives. Through your grace, we have received your bounty. Please guide us to embrace these blessings and use them to glorify God. May we, your servants, be the ones who tend the land and produce the fruit as Jesus instructed. (Matthew 21:43)
The people of Congo are your most valuable harvest. May their leaders respect and cultivate that fruit to maturity. Through the education of young Congolese, continue to bless the Congo Protestant University as it harvests the fruit it has produced for your glory.
The Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Ghana is a self-governing church in Africa, and a long-standing partner of Global Ministries. It has strong roots in the reformed tradition, with over 600,000 members and 500 congregations throughout Ghana. The church is committed to a variety of ministries including spiritual and church growth, education, public health, cultural preservation efforts, and reforestation projects. Founded by the Breman Mission of Germany among the Ewe people of what was then considered German Togoland in 1840s, the church was one of the first in the African continent to adopt its own constitution in 1922.Read more
August 14, 1919 – July 9, 2017
Lectionary Selection: Matthew 20:1-16
Prayers for South Africa:
Thank you for your outpouring of grace. You are kind and generous to all your children. Teach us to see others with your eyes and be just as forgiving. Thank you for the healing that results when we are quick to forgive. Bless and keep South Africa and her people during these years of mending the wounds of injustice. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
It is with deep sadness, sorrow and pain that we inform you of the passing on of the UCCSA General Secretary – The Rev Alistair Arends. Rev Arends was diagnosed with cancer and has not been well for some time now. He has been in and out of hospital over the past few months, after being discharged in June 2017, his condition was stabilized and was recuperating very well. However, on Monday we received the tragic news that he has been called to higher service.Read more